As you might have heard, DutchReview has a new office and it’s located at PLNT Leiden! This is one of our highlights of the year, and since it’s always a good idea to share some love with those around you we’re going to need to tell you some more about PLNT. Here are 4 impressive things about PLNT and how it is helping entrepreneurs in Leiden reach their full potential.
#1 What’s going on at PLNT in Leiden?
PLNT is a new innovative hub in Leiden, but that’s cutting it short. This particular hub centers around innovation and entrepreneurship while being vividly aware that it is situated in a through and through smart student city as Leiden. Most importantly, PLNT is a community where anyone with a groundbreaking idea is welcome to join! It doesn’t matter if you’re just a student who wants to combine learning with working. Or maybe a young professional who is ready to launch a startup. Dreams are big at plans; maybe that’s why we set up shop there? It’s reflected in playful meeting rooms which are named after fellas such as Elon Musk and Henry Ford.
“any product that needs a manual to work is broken” – Elon musk
Lots of big words, but what is also happening at PLNT?
Aside from offering you a supportive community, PLNT also has multiple work spaces available for both individuals and organizations engaged in innovation and entrepreneurship. The workspaces are perfect for young entrepreneurs who are ready to fully commit to their startup idea and want to rent an office of their own. You have the option of renting a desk, an office, or even a room for presentations and meetings.
We’ve seized an epic little corner office on the 2nd floor, as you can see it looks pretty neat.
PLNT also has the ‘binnentuin’ – which is way too hip and pretty to call a canteen. You’ve probably seen it around on our Insta-stories, grub is pretty good (and affordable!) there too!
#2 Amazing startups at PLNT in Leiden
PLNT has multiple startup companies under its roof, that are lead by ambitious entrepreneurs. There’s Okku for example, which develops ‘Internet of Things’ applications and has this kick-ass ‘IoT’ air monitor so you can see what’s going on, real-time, in your building when it comes to air quality.
Or how about the Virtual Reality Learning Lab at PLNT? It’s founded by VR-guru Robin de Lange and it’s a startup which explores the possibilities of Augmented & Virtual Reality in education. The company performs fundamental research, creates prototypes and develops complete applications. But the biggest upside for us at DutchReview is that we get to enjoy some sweet VR magic during our nights 🙂
There are bigger players too; CampusKey offers all-inclusive student accommodation with state-of-the-art facilities. The company helps students find a roof over their head in the housing crisis that the Netherlands is currently experiencing.
Here’s where it’s at:
#3 Sustainability at PLNT in Leiden
Aside from being an innovative hub, PLNT is also located in one of the most sustainable buildings that DutchReview has ever seen. As soon as you enter the building you can’t help but notice the Aquaponics next to the stairs. It is a remarkable circular system in which fish and plants grow together. First, the fish eat, grow and produce waste. Second, the bacteria transform the fish waste into plant feed. And lastly, the plants take up the feed from the water, grow and blossom.
Less innovative, but certainly nice for our mood and vibe are the tons of plants throughout the building. As you walk through the building, you will notice plants and greens all over the place. Not to mention that the food at PLNT’s bar-restaurant ‘De Binnentuin’ (yes, there is one!) has quite a few vegetarian and vegan options.
The Roof : Our awesome rooftop garden
All these plants at PLNT (I know) are nice of course, but literally above my my office is a stunning rooftop garden. The roof garden at PLNT is a unique place in the heart of the city in the middle of the ‘Singelpark’* and a great place for students, startups, entrepreneurs, organisations and local residents to congregate. It is covered with beautiful flowers and greenery and boasts stunning views over Leiden and yes, even a chicken coop! A ‘Binnentuin’ also provides delicious homemade food and drinks. There is an indoor venue for rainy days and a bar on the rooftop.
Dutch innovation (where can only predict sheer magic) is also put to test on the roof. For example, plans are in the works to make the roof retain rain water and for plants to generate electricity.
*(If you’re wondering what the Singelpark is, it’s a recently completed park that runs along the whole of the outer canals of Leiden and its inspired by the High Line in NY, needless to say, it is epic.)
#4 Events at PLNT in Leiden
PLNT also hosts a ton of events every month that can help young entrepreneurs get inspired, learn new things and expand their network. For example, PLNT hosts the Venture Academy, where student entrepreneurs get to solidify their business ideas. The Venture Academy program is specifically designed to help your startup become ready for financial investment. With plenty of workshops, coaching and dedicated mentorship, young entrepreneurs get the much-needed support to kick-start their business.
PLNT also organizes Sprints, their most exciting (and challenging one) being Startup24. In the span of 24 hours (spread over 2 days) participants get to learn all about entrepreneurship by working on challenges in the Leiden area and beyond. You have 24 hours to grasp the context of the challenge and come up with an innovative solution, under the guidance of experts and professional coaches. In the end, each team pitches the solution they came up with in an attempt to win first place and receive 500 euros.
Check this page if you’re interested in the stuff that’s done at PLNT and if you ever want to visit an event here.
#5 Bonus! DutchReview is there!
We almost forgot the best thing about PLNT, DutchReview is there! Read up on how we moved to our new office and now need a little bit of your help. Perhaps also check our stories about innovation in the Netherlands. Or our articles about our hometown of Leiden?
Well, you can see we’re in the right spot here, and if you want to be part of us and have lunch at PLNT – we’ve got some internship positions for you as well – see ya here?